Green hydrogen is produced from renewable energy by the electrolysis process. This means using an electric current to split water molecules into hydrogen and oxygen. Alkaline electrolysis (AEC) and Proton Exchange Membrane Electrolysis (PEMEC) are among the major technologies for producing green hydrogen.
Renewable energies power up the electrolyser which separates water into hydrogen and oxygen.
AEC | ALKALINE ELECTROLYSIS
An alkaline electrolyser cell consists of a pair of electrodes separated by a diaphragm filled with an alkaline solution, typically potassium hydroxide (KOH), in a concentration between 25% and 30%. Water is split at the cathode to form H2 while O2 forms at the anode.
COMPARISON OF HEAT EXCHANGERS
To ensure that the electrolysis occurs in stable and efficient conditions, it is therefore essential that all
plant and equipment interacting with the process, especially the heat exchangers, are carefully chosen and designed. Kelvion Products offers several heat exchanger solutions for thermal management in electrolysis systems. This paper will discuss and compare the different options for electrolyzer process cooling and also present options for auxiliary cooling.
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PEMEC | PROTON EXCHANGE MEMBRANE ELECTROLYSIS
Proton exchange membrane electrolysis (PEMEC) uses a solid polymer electrolyte - the proton exchange membrane - around which water flows. When an electrical voltage is applied to the membrane, protons migrate through it: hydrogen is produced at the cathode and oxygen at the anode.
The electrolysers do not contain liquid electrolytes, but a solid, semi-permeable membrane through which the protons migrate.
ALKALINE ELECTROLYSIS VERSUS
PROTON EXCHANGE MEMBRANE ELECTROLYSIS
⊲ Low cost compared to PEMEC due to
⊲ High technology readiness levels
and proven concept
⊲ Long lifetimes of more than 10 years
⊲ Short response and start up time
⊲ Good part load capability
⊲ Smaller size compared to
⊲ High current density
⊲ High electrolyser efficiency
AEC DRAW BACKS
⊲ Alkaline setup required
⊲ Long start up and response time
⊲ Decreasing performance in part load
⊲ Requires bigger footprint than PEMEC
⊲ Lower electrolyser efficiency compared
PEMEC DRAW BACKS
⊲ High Cost due to precious metal
⊲ Comparatively short lifetime
of 3-4 years
DELIVERING THE FULL SCOPE
Storage and Transportation
We have a long history in the heat exchanger business. In addition to heat exchangers for the core electrolysis system, our portfolio includes solutions for the auxiliary up and downstream processes in power-to-gas applications. We have also successfully supplied heat exchanger solutions for water treatment. Our transformer cooling systems are operating worldwide. Both applications can be found in the upstream process in electrolyser power-to-gas plants. For downstream applications we can rely on our know how and experience in gas purification and compression applications. We are pleased to consult with and serve you regarding all auxiliary processes in electrolyser plants.